So you want to revolutionize Somali entrepreneurship?

Most Somalis who venture into entrepreneurship/business like to take the ‘safe route’ since they are under the impression that Somalis don’t like novelties. Wrong. When you got nomad blood, your disposition can be described in two words: wanderlust + change.

What you need to keep in mind when it comes to Somalis is that they value convenience, efficiency and consistency. They don’t have time to experiment or venture too much outside their shopping habits. One problem with the nomadic lifestyle is that there’s no sense of structure so there’s little patience to be found when it comes to complex processes and abstract thought.Your services must be better than what they are getting now. And by better, I don’t mean ethically, because they don’t give two shits. They make due with whatever – which is kinda sad. But you need to understand their mindsets and patterns. I wouldn’t rush into the idea prematurely.

•Take your time to research, experiment and be ready to tweak the end product countless times.

• Don’t be discouraged by a lack of enthusiasm.

• Gauge your demographics feedback or lack thereof. Try to understand why certain things don’t pan out the way you envisioned.

• See your idea as a seed: it’ll look MUCH different when it’s fully developed, and it’s important that you don’t get too attached to what you envision NOW. Allow the idea to guide you by tapping into WHY you got that idea in the first place? Brainstorm how you got that idea and why it’s so important to you. This will be the foundation which will support any unpredictable shift and allow you to bounce back from whatever.

• Most Somalis fail in creative or technological novelties because they expect the consumers to adapt to their products, just because they think it’s a good idea. People, ESPECIALLY Somalis, don’t like the unknown and inconvenience. It’s important to bridge the gap between what currently exists on the market and your idea.

* Don’t share your idea with Somalis. They tend to be really pessimistic about these things. I’d consult with non-Somalis through forums and relevant subreddits. Try to find people on YouTube who are in the field you’re interested in – entrepreneurs. Read books that don’t necessarily deal with trade, but with resourcefulness and creativity. It’s a game of tetris. You have to improvise and flip shit . Books like

Where good ideas come from” by Steven Johnson, or 

Give and take” by Adam Grant” or 

“Abundance- the future is better than you think” by Peter H. Diamandis and Steven Kotler.

In closing, you gotto believe that you can create ANYTHINGGG. If you believe in it, and pump your focus into it, you can bend the laws of quantum mechanics in your favour. Don’t ever for a nanosecond believe that the status quo controls the future. Look up ‘adjacent possible‘. It’s a very interesting concept that Steven Johnson explores in his book I mentioned above. Here’s his explanation of it that can sum up everything I just wrote:

The adjacent possible is a kind of shadow future, hovering on the edges of the present state of things, a map of all the ways in which the present can reinvent itself.
The strange and beautiful truth about the adjacent possible is that its boundaries grow as you explore them. Each new combination opens up the possibility of other new combinations.

Push.The.Envelope*

*camel. 😜

Life after divorce

I want to take a moment to send my appreciation and love to all my sisters who for whatever reason got a divorce and/or has kids from a previous marriage .

You are our unsung (s)heroes. Your past is not indicative of failure but of a brave woman who dared greatly in love and when she saw that it wasn’t going to work out for her wellbeing, walked out amidst the whispers and rumours.
I see a woman who runs her own life and is resilient.

Y’all might be confused over why I see divorce as bravery. It’s not about divorce per se, but the connotations. As Somali women, we have unwritten rules and regulations ; we must marry early on to be viewed as a complete woman and we must never under any circumstances let go of that man because the success or failure of that marriage is used to gauge a woman’s worth. If we don’t marry, it’s our fault. If he abuses us, it’s our fault for being weak and not leave. If he marries another woman, it’s because we came up short. If we get divorced, it’s our fault.

There are MANY women (and men, for sure. I’m not discounting the men, but my focus in this post is women) who stay in dead relationships far too long because they don’t think they can deal with the repercussions of society. To them, it’s easier to stomach abuse or even if there’s no abuse, just being with someone you don’t vibe with at all is damaging.

Why do you think the stereotype of maseyr (jealousy) exists? In Somalia it’s common to see a woman who found out about her husband’s new wife or who was dished an unexpected divorce to go into psychosis. Like, it’s the only time a woman will get a pass for losing it. And the man is expected to bribe her with gifts and change the furniture etc, and this is called maseyr-tir ( literally means jealousy abolishing). Or he straight up divorces the new wife to please the first one. Though the reasons are complex and it’s not my intention to oversimplify it, but a lot of that nervous breakdown has to do with the fact that for a woman, marriage is her LIFE,  her sense of pride, her cultural visa. Somali aunties don’t see me as a full adult even though I’m almost 27. I always get the vibe that my ‘real’ life hasn’t started yet. And once you’re divorced, you inherit the term ‘garoob’ as if to imply you’re defective. And a man walks scot-free. At most it’s said ‘naag buu furay’ ( he divorced a woman).

So in the face of a divorce, many Somali women face an identity crisis ; who am I without a man?

This is why when I see a sister who has been divorced, I never pity her. I see her as an inspiration. One of the reasons why I’ve delayed marriage is because I didn’t want that burden of making sure this marriage lasts a lifetime or else…
But seeing a sister who walks with her head held high, with the best glo up ever, it makes me less afraid of marriage. Marriage IS a risk, and despite the chances of a bad outcome you still have to be vulnerable and go for it. Love like all other great things in life, has no certainty and you need to be brave!

Because of seeing such wholesome women, I know that I can dare greatly and if I don’t get the outcome I wished for, and walk out even with a child or two, I WILL be ok. I WILL thrive. I WON’T be defective.

It’s ironic that I’d learn that from people who got divorced, but that’s real. And it’s unfortunate that these women are seen as heroes because of how much negativity and stigma they have to contend with. I wish their heroism wasn’t rooted in such pain, but that’s heroes for you ; they rise from the ashes.

I hope I have not trivialized or made you feel any less, my sister, but I just wanted to show my love in the best way I know how. ❤❤❤

Angry truth

You know what really upsets me?

That people are warping and distorting Allaah’s ethereal religion and the prophet’s sallaawatullaah wa salaamuhu calayhi sunnah. That people are as arrogant to think that because Islaam has been in their lineage spanning generations that somehow Islaamic knowledge is passed down via DNA.

It hurts me when people are barring others from the path of tranquillity and success because they sin differently. It hurts me when people make Allaah out to be some vindictive and angry being, incapable of forgiveness. It hurts me when people use Allaah’s words as pawn in an argument and ahaadeeth as comebacks.

It hurts me when people bash non-hijaabis but not pay mind to the salah. It hurts me when people have more in common with ISIS in that they make takfir ( saying someone’s a kaafir) on someone who committed a major sin. When they say that queer Muslims can’t be Muslims.

Do you guys hear yourselves? Do you hear the arrogance in your tone? Do you feel the evil bubbling up through your chest cavity? Do you feel the wrath of Allaah for misguiding people?

Do you think that the prophet sallAllaahu calayhi wasallam stayed in Makkah for ten years preaching TAWHEED in VAIN?

People have concerns that the religion is being attacked and diluted. Don’t be so arrogant. Fear the One who created you and everyone above and under the earth FROM NOTHING. The deen is NOT in need of our flimsy vigilance nor were we appointed as gatekeepers!!

The only threat is that of IGNORAMUSES who think they know, and who give the appearance that they know, and people ask them and they answer without batting an eyelid. The TRUE atrocity is that people don’t care about TAWHEED anymore.

I’ve asked people, what about tawheed? Why isn’t anybody teaching tawheed anymore? Why isn’t anyone emphasizing it the way that it should be emphasized? I’ve been told that ‘ everyone knows what laa ilaaha ill Allaah’ means.

Ah. What is the meaning of tawheed? What does it encompass? IF it’s so easy, why did the prophet sallAllaaahu calayhi wasallam spend A DECADE with the people Allaah chose to be the luckiest of humans to accompany the best of humans? A people who were more sincere, braver, eloquent in Arabic?

No. But now every lecture is about : hijaab, fasting, khalifa, hijra, marriage, how to memorize the Qur’aan in a month.

Understand me that I’m not belittling those topics, I AM NOT.

But I’m saying we’ve lost direction. We’re going and doing things with great speed. But ila weyn?

When the cibaadah (worship) becomes caadah (habit), taqwa is no more.

Where’s the consciousness of Allaah that would make someone reflect before speaking about the deen of Allaah? Or judge someone? Or expel someone out of the folds of Islaam? Or restrict Allaah’s Mercy?

Why has Islaam been turned into an elitist club? Why are people so intent on othering those unlike them?

Have you forgotten about the story of Yunus (Jonah)? A prophet sent by Allaah?

His people wouldn’t pay heed to his preaching, and he became exasperated and decided to flee town before the punishment of Allaah rained down on them. He went on board a boat and in the middle of nowhere, there was a storm and the huge waves threatened to capsize the boat. They threw lots about who to throw overboard, to lighten the weight, and time and time again the shortest stick was drawn by Yunus calayhi salaam. So he volunteered to jump aboard.

In that same instance a whale swallowed him whole! In the layers of darknesses – the belly of the whale, the darkness of the sea and the darkness of the night — he reflected about what happened. The exasperation, the fleeing, the storm, now this? And it hit him that this was a punishment from Allaah, for having given up on the people he was sent to. For deciding when enough was enough.

And the only thing he said was

وَذَا النُّونِ إِذ ذَّهَبَ مُغَاضِبًا فَظَنَّ أَن لَّن نَّقْدِرَ عَلَيْهِ فَنَادَى فِي الظُّلُمَاتِ أَن لَّا إِلَهَ إِلَّا أَنتَ سُبْحَانَكَ إِنِّي كُنتُ مِنَ الظَّالِمِينَ

And (remember) Dhan-Nûn (Jonah), when he went off in anger, and imagined that We shall not punish him (i.e. the calamites which had befallen him)! But he cried through the darkness (saying): Lâ ilâha illa Anta [none has the right to be worshipped but You (O Allâh)], Glorified (and Exalted) are You [above all that (evil) they associate with You]. Truly, I have been of the wrong-doers.”

Man, I’m too incensed to finish with a conclusion. I had to stop myself before I write an entire book out of anger .

Somalis and anti-arabism?

So lately I’ve seen anti-arab sentiments by Somalis floating around the interwebs and I’ve been wondering where that came from, until I saw a post earlier blaming Arabism for watering down and erasing our Somali heritage and history.

Boy, is that the epitome of Somali mentality – blame.

We’re so skilled in the game of laying blame after decades of practice. Civil war was because of qabyaalad. Somalis leaving the deen is because of the West. Kids being western and not giving a damn about their ethnicity waaba aduun gadoon. Let’s remedy that by putting the 15 year old kid on a one-way trip to Luuq in Somalia.

You can fall countless times but you haven’t failed until you blame someone else for tripping you.

Continue Reading

Rancour

Some people see children being abused or mistreated and they hesitate protecting the child by saying that ‘ a mother knows her child best’ ‘ I don’t want to get in between a mother and her child’ or ‘ maybe the mother is under a lot of stress’
A child is not property!! You expect such an attitude from someone mishandling their car or phone or laptop and you bite your tongue by telling yourself it’s their stuff,their money, and if they want to destroy them then that’s their prerogative I guess.
A child is not bought or owned. A child is a complete and worthy human being who is in the vulnerable position of being defenseless against any mistreatment.
Being a parent doesn’t turn you into an infallible person. A shitty woman becomes a shitty mother 9 months later. A pregnancy does not change a person. It only brings out the true colours of a person. That’s why I find women who strive to be good mothers to be superwomen. Seriously, no one can understand how taxing it is to have a child depend on one 24/7 – and even more so with more kids one has.
However, that added stress brings out the demons in malicious people. It doesn’t turn them into supermoms or superdads. It turns them into psychotic abusive twisted fucks. You hear of children being tortured,starved,emotionally abused, sexually abused, murdered by their own parents. And those cases are only the most extreme that make it to the news. Imagine how many other fly under the radar. Or how many years a child is abused and battered before it becomes known. Usually because someone has the humanity to raise alarm.
The apologetic stance we have in the Somali culture is appalling. People would rather watch a mother clearly abuse her kids because of their spinelessness and then have the audacity to slap a moral label to their cowardice by saying oh a mother loves her kids the most. GTFO!!!
A mother has such privilege IF she fulfills her immense responsibilities toward her kids. Allaah didn’t give her such a privilege for nothing. It’s to encourage a positive feedback loop between children and mothers so as to assuage for the mothers difficult task that goes on for 15+ years.
But if she fails in her responsibilities, if she arrogantly thinks that an innocent and defenseless child is her accessory, her punching bag for whenever she’s stressed, then that is the worst kind of oppression for which she will be brought to account!! Allaah forbade oppression from Himself, then what of others! A woman went to hell because she starved a cat, then what of an innocent human being??!
I’d rather the CPS take away that child than for me to silently watch from the sidelines because I erroneously believe that an abusive mother is better than non-muslim foster parents. tf? Allaah is the Guider. A child can be misguided under the watching eyes of strict parents. Have you forgotten about prophet Nuh’s son?
And have you forgotten about the fact that Musa alayhis salaam has Pharaoh as a foster parent??! The very tyrant his mother wanted to save her son from when she threw Musa in the river in his cot.
A child who is alive and well is better off than a dead child, or a child who’s been afflicted with irreversible emotional trauma.
WALAHI! If I see a child in distress, be it on a bus or a mosque, I will go HAM on the mother and I don’t give a flying fuck about how pissed she gets. She has the verbal arsenal to cuss me til Kingdom comes, and she has the strength to beat me up (or try) but that child can’t do neither. A mother might yell at a rowdy child or snap and slap the kid, that’s understandable. But to flat-out beat the child senseless or be so disgustingly verbally abusive?
Would you pass a man beating his wife in the street by saying that you don’t know what she did?
Oppression is oppression. Somalis, I’m sick and tired of this abuse pandering and passivity!! Speak up against the injustices that go on around you before Allaah renders you mute and takes away your intellect! Speak up even if you’re certain that you would be ostracized. Speak even if you’re so scared that you feel as if the bermuda triangle is in the pit of your stomach.
If you witness injustice, know that Allaah put you in that position to test your courage and empathy.
But then again. What do I expect of a people who are blind to the injustices in their own souls. A people who’ve perfected the art of pretence and hypocrisy. A people who cry crocodile tears at the funerals of people they’ve killed, who pledge false dollars to charity just to become known as generous. A people who polish a red apple that is all rotten inside, crawling with maggots. A people who are only concerned with injustice when it floods their facebook newsfeeds, only angered when qabyaalad comes to their backyard, only saddened when their needs aren’t met.
I’ve never been this harsh but Somalis, we’re scum ! We let fear of the truth rob us of our dignity, peace, country, dreams. For fear of being separated from the herd, we’ve sold our souls to the devil at a wholesale price and allowed us to be lulled into a false sense of security. Everywhere around us the false construct we’ve clung to for the past two decades is falling apart, but we got our dhaqan right? Single mothers are oppressed everywhere, but maa shaa Allaah we are a generous lot right? Sheikhs are twisting the truth to further their own causes and use the deen to benefit themselves – but allaahumma baarik we are a people who love the Qur’aan so much, right? Politicians buy themselves beach houses in Malibu with the aid money for internally displaced persons and school children and are mostly a womanizing bunch, but alhamdulillaah we have managed to keep afloat relatively well considering the fact that we’ve been without effective government since 1991. We are a people who are the biggest conartists this world has seen and won’t miss a heartbeat in saying that our kids are born out of wedlock to claim a few extra hundred bucks, but tabarakAllaah we are quick to put ‘loose’ women in their places before they corrupt our clean culture.
Walahi I will deconstruct this systematic falsehood and expose every alley and corner that we hide our feeble and coward selves, until my last breath. I don’t get angry often but when I do, I become the Hulk. And you know what’s so dangerous about me, and this pledge I just took? I’m included in it. I’m my own biggest opposition when it comes to calling myself out on BS. I don’t have any inhibitions, nothing I would stop for, nothing to hide. I’m ready to put myself in harms way just to wake us up from this coma, because I’d rather die in my truth than live in falsehood. I’d rather embarrass myself, stumble, commit the worst social gauffes that’d blackball me from every Somali community on Allaah’s green eath – than to look on as hyenas and vultures are ripping our somalinimo to shreds.
And oh. If you’ve come this far in reading and you resonate, don’t share this. I know what you’re thinking. You feel that anger, the frustration, and you want to hide behind my post and feel as if you’ve done something. You’ll share and after a day or two it’s back to normal. No way Jose! Read this and reflect. Lock this away in your mind. Do.Not.Share. I’m sick and tired of social clicktivism and victim mentality and scapegoating. We are all in this shit together. Step down from your high horse. We’re all either perpetrators or tacit supporters. There’s a third category, but you won’t hear much about that one. It’s ugly and menial and no fun. Burning in the fire of the truth until nothing remains of facades and hypocricy in one’s heart. A slow and agonizing process of focusing on changing oneself before trying to change the world.

وَاتَّقُوا فِتْنَةً لَّا تُصِيبَنَّ الَّذِينَ ظَلَمُوا مِنكُمْ خَاصَّةً ۖ وَاعْلَمُوا أَنَّ الله شَدِيدُ الْعِقَابِ
“And fear the Fitnah (affliction and trial, etc.) which affects not in particular (only) those of you who do wrong (but it may afflict all the good and the bad people), and know that Allâh is Severe in punishment.”
(Al-Anfal 8:25)

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